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Rose Hill Regional Landfill

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Site Description

The Rose Hill Regional Landfill Site is a former municipal landfill located in the Town of South Kingstown, Washington County, Rhode Island. The Town leased the land as a domestic and industrial waste disposal facility, which operated from 1967 to 1983. In 1983, the facility became inactive, and the operator graded and seeded the disposal areas. A transfer station for municipal waste, currently owned and operated by the Town, is located on a portion of the site. Three separate areas on and/or near the site received waste including a solid waste landfill, a bulky waste disposal area, and a sewage sludge landfill. Current owner-operated activities within the site's boundary include a hunting preserve, skeet and qualifying range, kennel and field training area for bird dogs, and a pet cemetery. The area is both rural and residential, with forested areas, fields, small farms and sand/gravel mining activities nearby. The site is bordered by the Saugatucket River to the east, while Mitchell Brook flows through the site.

Current Site Status and Cleanup Actions to Date

  • Specific concerns are as follows:
    • On-site groundwater monitoring wells contain several volatile organic compounds (VOCs) as well as some heavy metals.
    • Visual observations indicate that Mitchell Brook, an unnamed brook, and the Saugatucket River are impacted by contaminated run-off from the site.
    • Three private wells adjacent to the site are contaminated with low levels of organic compounds, as are on-site soils.
    • Landfill gases have been found migrating laterally off-site in the vicinity of residential properties.
    • The site is not completely fenced, making it possible for people to come into direct contact with the landfill materials on-site.
    • The Saugatucket Pond, located 2,000 feet downstream from the site, is used for fishing and swimming.
    • A freshwater wetland is also located 500 feet downstream, and could be subject to contamination.
  • In 1999, EPA completed its evaluation of options for cleanup of the Rose Hill Landfill, held public meetings, and received public comment on its proposal for cleanup of the site. In response to public comment and discussions with the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM), EPA altered its proposed cleanup plan to include consolidation of the bulky waste disposal area with the solid waste landfill.
  • In December 1999, EPA's Record of Decision (ROD), or cleanup plan, described a final remedy for the site. The plan included, among other components, consolidation of the bulky waste onto the solid waste landfill and capping of the solid waste landfill with an impermeable cap. In addition, the plan called for active collection and thermal treatment of the landfill gases by an enclosed flare. Further assessments would also be conducted to ensure protectiveness and ascertain the need for potential future actions, if any, concerning the migration of contaminants to local surface and ground waters.
  • In the fall of 2002, the RIDEM entered into a Cooperative Agreement (CA) with EPA to initiate the Remedial Design (RD), or work, for the selected remedy. With completion of a settlement with the Towns of Narragansett and South Kingstown and the State of Rhode Island on December 19, 2002, the State elected to take the lead on cleanup of the site while EPA would oversee the work. The State plans to complete the RD by the end of 2004.
  • In anticipation of the completion of the RD, the State and EPA entered into a second CA for implementing the Source Control RA on September 10, 2004. Actual construction of the remedy is expected to take upwards of two years to complete.

Current Funding Status

  • The estimated response costs at the site equal $32.7 million, including $9 million in past costs, $17 million estimated for RD/RA, and $6.7 million for operation & maintenance.
  • The 2002 settlement with the municipalities resulted in a cash payment of $4 million into a site-specific Special Account from the Towns, and agreement to pay 30% of EPA's share of future response costs in excess of $8.5 million. The State and the federal government will share equally (50/50 split) in the cost of the RD/RA (estimated at $17 million). The Towns will also pay 30% of the State's share of actual RD/RA costs and the State will assume 100% of the O&M costs.
  • Currently, EPA has obligated $700,000 for its share of the State-lead RD and $2 million towards the Source Control RA from the site-specific Special Account.

For more information on this site, please read the Rose Hill Regional Landfill Fact Sheet on the Region 1 Superfund Web site.

Key Accomplishments

  • In the fall of 2002, the RIDEM entered into a Cooperative Agreement (CA) with EPA to initiate the Remedial Design (RD) work for the selected remedy. With completion of a settlement with the Towns of Narragansett and South Kingstown, and the State of Rhode Island on December 19, 2002, the State elected to take the lead on cleanup of the site while EPA would oversee the work. The State plans to complete the RD by the end of 2004.
  • In anticipation of the completion of the RD, the State and EPA entered into a second CA for implementing the Source Control Remedial Action (RA) on September 10, 2004. Actual construction of the remedy is expected to take upwards of two years to complete.
  • Currently, EPA has obligated $700,000 for its share of the State-lead, RD and $2 million towards the Source Control RA from the site-specific Special Account.

 

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